Pub. date: 2004 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952576 | Print ISBN: 9780761923602 | Online ISBN: 9781412952576| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Scott Ratzan & J. Gregory Payne & Skye K. Schulte
Health communication in its broadest definition is any type of communication whose content is concerned with health. As a field, however, health communication is more clearly defined as the process through which one person, group, or governmental or private organization uses various communication strategies and channels to educate, motivate, and perpetuate information, skills, and behaviors that are generally accepted to benefit (improve) the health of individuals and the public. This can occur at the individual, interpersonal, national, and global levels. Health communication is concerned with the strategic use of ethical, persuasive means to craft and deliver campaigns and implement specific strategies designed to promote good health and prevent disease. Ideally, health communication is the right information to the right people at the right time for an intended, beneficial effect. Informed opinion and active cooperation on the part of the public are of utmost importance in the improvement of health of ...